Buried alive to pass the time.
July 16, 2005 3:56 PM Subscribe
I've got a coding project, which will make me a bazillion dollars if I can pull it off. But I'm having trouble starting it, partially because I'm not a well-trained programmer, and partially becuase I'm unsure of whether to seek help.
posted by metaculpa to technology (22 answers total)
To give you an idea of the scope of the project, I will need to integrate the following:
- RSS and web scraping
- database creation and heavy live usage.
- text analysis methods.
- numerical methods, particularly (very) large matrix computations
- once it's done, the fun of talking to very business-driven people
(God, that looks like I'm trying to remake google.)
At this point, I'm really just trying to bootstrap this into a proof of concept, and I'd love to do it all alone in my spare time, with zero funding. Is that just unrealistic?
The further wrench in the works is this:
While I know how to do all these things conceptually, and have a good idea of the theoretical problems involved, I don't yet know a useful language. I'm a Matlab guru, but that won't help. So: will python do the job for this? [I know it has the modules to save me a lot of work, but: Should I worry about memory management for large computations? Should I worry about speed, stability?] Am I insane to try to develop a major project in a language I don't know?
The final, and biggest question is this: am I insane to try to manage a complex project in a language I don't know, with a focus that is slightly out of my field, in my spare time, alone? If the answer is yes - what should I look for in a collaborator? Given my weak programming, I worry that I'll lose control of the project once I explain the basic ideas to a reasonably intelligent programmer. Does that mean I should focus on getting them to sign an NDA and officially employ them, or should I employ a talented friend and trade some control for the trust of our friendship? Should I be programming at all?
Anyway, that's my rambling set of concerns about my project. Any thoughts on how you might go about this yourself?
Where would you ask for advice if you felt out of your depth on a project you loved?